A child’s first years of life and the environment they grow up in can influence their ability to learn, their academic success, and their path toward adulthood. Children under five are Quebec’s future; let’s give each of them the same chance for success.
These vulnerabilities can have unwanted consequences that last throughout a child’s life.
According to the 2017 Quebec Survey of Child Development in Kindergarten1 (QSCDK), of the 83,000 kindergarten children who were evaluated, slightly more than one-quarter (27.7%) are identified as vulnerable in at least one of the five areas of development.
Because children’s development in their early years can influence their ability to learn, their academic success, and their adult life, it’s important to take action early.
That means giving children the best development conditions right from the start at conception to avoid problems later in life. This means giving all children an equal chance at fulfilling their potential and becoming accomplished, engaged citizens.
It is internationally recognized that societies that invest in early childhood and families have the best levels of health.
Because the children of today are the grown-ups of tomorrow, it’s important to offer them the best possible start in life and an equal chance to reach their full potential. Making early childhood a priority means investing in a more educated, well-rounded, and prosperous society.
One extra dollar invested in early childhood education can result in $6 in economic benefits.Conference Board of Canada
For every $1 million invested, the educational childcare sector generates four times more jobs than the construction sector.Early Years Study 3
Investing in early childhood reduces the risk that children will need specialized services. That’s equivalent to a savings of $5,000 per child before the age of 12.Early Years Study 3
Small children are particularly receptive to stimuli because the brain develops very quickly in early childhood. As an additional source of stimuli outside of the home, quality daycares have a positive effect on children’s development. The benefits are even greater for children from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Safe and accessible public spaces where all children can play, reading workshops and other quality educational activities, healthy and nutritious food that’s easy to find in public spaces—all these things contribute to the development of young children. Municipalities throughout Quebec can improve the quality of life of families in tangible ways and, at the same time, help young children develop their full potential.
When it comes to children’s health, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Access to health care and nearby services is crucial for young children’s health, well-being, and development.
In Quebec, balancing work with family life is a huge source of stress for most parents. Their work responsibilities can sometimes conflict with their role as parents, creating tension. This extra stress can make parents less present, less loving, and more irritable, which can create less-than-ideal conditions for their child’s development.
Pregnancy, childbirth, and the first moments with baby are crucial stages in a child’s health and development. Improving birth conditions is an excellent way to make sure little ones get off to a great start.
The physical environment in which young children live can have an impact on their development. Growing up in an inadequate environment can affect how well they do at school. That’s why it’s also important to focus on children’s homes.
Do you care about the well-being of young children and want to take action on their behalf? With just a few clicks, you can send a letter to your provincial MNA or your elected municipal official to let them know that together, we should be doing more for children.
This simple, tangible gesture will help make things happen and, ultimately, pave the way for better living environments and conditions for young children and their families!
The Hand in hand for the little ones initiative unites committed partners who are inspired by a common goal: to make early childhood a priority for Quebec society.